Last weekend I read Matt Yglesias's concise 76-page critique of housing policy, The Rent is Too Damn High. I agreed with pretty much everything he says, and I think everybody who's interested in these issues should read it. I want to pick up on a couple of the points Yglesias made, but then to go in a different direction. Yglesias is mostly talking about the average price of housing relative to average incomes, and that's important, but I want to talk about the distribution of housing prices: how and why some houses and apartments are more expensive than others, and what that means for access (and therefore for justice and equal opportunity), for society, and for our other goals: increasing efficiency and reducing carnage and pollution.
In San Francisco, pretty much everyone agrees on one thing: The city’s housing is crazy expensive. Apartment-hunting causes its own form of PTSD. The rent, to put it simply, is too damn high. But even among those who care very much ... Read Post
We have to agree with Matt Yglesias on this one: Ben Bernanke just gave one of his best ever speeches on the economy. But whereas Yglesias praises Bernanke on a fairly narrow point -- the fact that Bernanke promised to keep rates lo... Read Post
Matt Yglesias‘s ebook, The Rent is Too Damn High tells the story of how high housing costs are having profound negative impacts on our society. Yglesias explains how current attempts to deal with the issue are inadequate, and how r... Read Post